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In Conversation With Mariam Shapera On Her Debut Children's Book - Up Up You Go Jo!

As a children's book illustrator, I get to bring life to many stories and talk to amazing authors. Writing a children's book is not an easy task and while many plan to write their own story, only a few can go through the process of getting their book published. Everyone has their journey when it comes to entering the world of children's book publishing, and in this blog post, we are going to find how Mariam Shapera, a wife and mother of three, published her first book. She works as a part-time family physician who loves to spend as much time with her family as possible creating experiences with them whether it be traveling or indoor activities. She enjoys reading both fiction and non-fiction books and watching movies with her husband.

Mariam Shapera. author of Up Up You Go Jo

I had the opportunity to ask her some questions about her work and her debut children's book, 'Up Up You Go Jo!'.

1) When and why did you decide to write your own children’s book?

I have always wanted to write a children's book and now more than ever have been inspired as I am a mother experiencing the mind of three children in front of me every day. I

had never found enough time or inspiration before but whilst at home during the pandemic last year and being so close with my children, I felt that was the perfect timing.

2) After you decided to write your book, what was the process to get it published?

I did some research on this and found a Canadian self-publishing company and contacted them. They provided the editors, designers, illustrators, and even help with the

marketing process.

Mariam's work space

3) Do you derive any inspiration from your medical profession when you are writing or do you keep those worlds separate?

For this book at least, I kept those worlds separate. This book was not inspired by my profession but by my middle son, named Joseph. He loves music and outer space with

such passion and the idea came to my mind to combine the two themes and create an imaginative narrative.

4) Who are your favorite children’s authors?

My favorite children's authors are Julia Donaldson and Frank Asch.

5) Please tell us something about your upcoming book, ‘Up Up You Go Jo’.

It is a story about a young boy who has just written his music and is very proud of it. Then he wakes up to find his music notes are all missing and figures out that they have all

flown up to outer space. He decides to go in search of them.

Book cover - Up Up You Go Jo

6) Who was the illustrator for this book and how do you find them?

The illustrator was I Cenizal, she was recommended by Tellwell Publishing.

7) Is there any specific age group this book is aimed at?

Yes, children aged 3-8 years old.

8) Your upcoming book is related to music, what kind of music do you like?

I like to listen to all types of music but the piano is my favorite instrument.

9) Are you working on any other stories currently?

Currently no, but I have a plan for at least another book.

10) What platforms is your book going to be available on?

It will be available on


You can visit her website:


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